What you need to know
- Clubhouse has announced the addition of a new closed captioning feature.
- Clubhouse rooms will now display on-screen text as people talk.
Popular real-time voice app Clubhouse has gained an important new accessibility feature with the addition of closed captioning. With the feature enabled, people will see text appear on-screen as those in the room speak.
The feature, which was announced via Twitter, will reportedly support multiple languages out the gate but should still be considered a beta offering thanks to the difficulties involved. At the time of writing English, Cantonese, Mandarin Chinese, Yue Chinese, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Spanish, Arabic, Russian, and Turkish are all supported.
One user reported on Twitter that Spanish live captioning worked in one room, but in another, the Spanish speech was transcribed as English gibberish. An engineer at Clubhouse replied that this means the language detection might not have worked, so it seems that the app is still learning how to distinguish among non-English languages in beta.
Having grown extremely quickly during the early pandemic months, Clubhouse's popularity appears to have wained since the arrival of competition from the likes of Twitter and Spotify, although it's fair to say it's still one of the best iPhone apps for speaking to people in virtual rooms while limiting who can be heard.
Clubhouse also continues to add new features and refine older ones as time rolls on, helping ensure that it doesn't get left behind as bigger players enter the fray.